PHOTO PAGE 13
HEY, FACEBOOK, BREASTFEEDING IS NOT OBSCENE!

These pages are dedicated to breastfeeding women everywhere. They provide what is needed in the start of life. Breastfeeding is a very important act in nurturing children, and often a highlight in the life and memory of women, as the photos below suggest.

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Here we present the seventh page of photos banned from the social utility Facebook, as well as a few that haven't been. With several hundred million users, Facebook still removes from its pages photographs of women breastfeeding, despite complaints about that practice beginning as long ago as June 2007.

Facebook claimed that breastfeeding photos violated its terms of service if they showed "an entire breast." Eventually it dropped the vagueness and the euphemism and claimed that all photos with a visible nipple or areola were "obscene," "pornographic," or "sexually explicit." This claim by Facebook is at odds with legislation, case law, and actual practice throughout the USA. In addition, breastfeeding itself is allowed in public, exposed breasts or not, in almost all states in the country. By its attitude and action, Facebook is wrong. It demeans and stigmatizes women and breastfeeding.

In May 2009, the same Facebook spokesperson responsible for the above claims said that Facebook removes only a small number of photos of naked women breastfeeding. That would be funny if it weren't so ignorant. Facebook also claims that images of breasts harm children. That's absurd. Facebook wrongly uses children as an excuse for its immaturity and errors.

Facebook is undoubtedly a great utility, both useful and fun. Its worldwide acceptance on the Internet confers upon it a responsibility to do better.

The protest against Facebook's removal of many breastfeeding photos isn't really about legality. It's not even about rights. It's about what is right.

Number of photos in this collection: 416. Of those, 400 have been banned, some more than once. The few others are here for comparison. Comments from the photos' owners are often illuminating. Note that many thousands more photos have been banned than we have collected.

In recent times, whole accounts have been removed by Facebook over one beautiful, important, helpful, legal photo. Facebook also uses inappropriate skin-recognition software to present targeted users with many randomly chosen photos of theirs to delete on threat of losing their account. Unlike comparable sites, Facebook has appointed itself the world's moralistic photo vigilante, deploying these and similar tactics well known from large tyrannical European states of the 20th century. Its ignorant, crass, inexcusable censorship, which it attempts to justify with glib spin that is false in every detail, also indirectly supports the USA's longstanding dehumanizing manipulation of women's bodies and its high rate of violence against them.


Our NON-DISCLAIMER re photos

Many sites would carry a warning: Keep away if you're under 18! NSFW!

We don't believe in that. Women's breasts in photos like these bother no one except those who have unfortunately been trained to be embarrassed by them or to control them when they have no right to.


We posted most of the photos at the same height. We acknowledge that some appeared on Facebook bigger, and a few smaller. The effect a photo has depends on size, among other things. Also, we cannot guarantee how things like colour or contrast appear, because they depend on individual monitors.

Photographs on this site are not to be reproduced in any location or in any medium or format without the prior consent of the owner of the photograph, except as permitted by law. Neither TERA nor its proprietors, members, or site host assumes any responsibility for what is posted, with which they may or may not agree. Comments may have been edited for clarity or legal reasons.

FB200.jpg FB201.jpg

These photos, from Mell Fraze, were banned March 9, 2010.

"The odd thing is that out of an entire album of historic breastfeeding photos, only one was deleted,
that of an African-American mother nursing her child, ca. 1937 (above, right). All of the historic breastfeeding
photos in my album are available from public sources and have been gathered by Jennifer James on her
mothering.com blog, which is where I copied them from."

After she wrote that, Mell found that the photo on the above left was removed: an Inuit woman
breastfeeding two babies, ca. 1904. The original may be found here.

FB202.jpg Photo from Serene Dawn Johnson

"This image was removed from Facebook on Thursday, March 11, 2010. I put it back up. My account was deleted four hours later."

FB203.jpg Photo from Tara Brown (her second)

Banned in early March, 2010

FB204.jpg Photo from Charlotte Russell

Banned February 24, 2010

FB205-4.jpg Photo from Patti Brick

This photo represents a 30-second video of Patti's daughter breastfeeding. The video was banned March 15, 2010. We'll post something here when we can link to the video.

FB206.jpg Photo from Laura Gilchrist

Banned March 10, 2010

"This photo depicts my sister Anna Gilmore tandem nursing her daughter (13 weeks) and my son (3 weeks) while I was in the hospital from gallbladder surgery. I posted this because I wanted to share an awe-inspiring story of breastfeeding and sisterhood. If she hadn't helped me in the first few weeks with my son, we probably would not have had success with nursing. Even before my hospital stay, she would nurse Rylan to ensure he could latch properly, because my nipples were so sore that all I could do was pump and feed him the expressed breast milk."

FB207.jpg Photo from Fanny Maxant for MILC*

Banned March 8, 2010

*The Mothers' International Lactation Campaign took place on Facebook March 8, 2010 (International Women's Day).

FB208.jpg Photo from Gemma-Rose Turnbull

Banned March 29, 2010

"I have a fan page for Show Us Ya Tits on Facebook called Show Us Ya Gazoongas. ('Tits' is a no-no word on Facebook, so I went with 'Gazoongas.') It is just there to update people on my ongoing photography project about breasts, share breast-related news stories, and show a few pics.

"Facebook removed the image of me at the recent opening of my exhibition in Fremantle with my 84-year-old Grandmother’s saggy naked bosom in the background, and the image of my nephew breastfeeding (above). They left the images of the lovely Sexpo Showgirls and their enhanced breasts, the image of the wet T-shirt competition, and the image of a recently augmented breast floating in the light of the operating theatre". [Note from TERA: the next day, March 30, Facebook banned the first two images mentioned in the previous sentence.]

FB209.jpg FB210.jpg FB211.jpg

These photos of Kate Hansen's artwork were banned March 27 and 29 (above, left and middle) and March 28, 2010 (above, right). After being
reposted, all three were banned on April 5, 2010, then again on May 12, 2010. The photo to the left was also banned on October 8, 2011.

The site for Kate Hansen's work is here.

FB212.jpg Photo from Kate Hansen

Banned March 28, 2010 as "hateful, threatening, or obscene" in conjunction with the breastfeeding artwork above. Other images like this are deleted regularly, although we don't generally post them.

FB213.jpg Photo from April Purinton

Banned February 23, 2010

Read April Purinton's blog, Eclectic Effervescence, for comments on Facebook and many other things.

FB214.jpg Photo from Jennifer Richards

Banned April 12, 2010

"I have not been able to nurse my son since having this pic taken. That's why having it removed is that much more painful. I long to breastfeed again."

FB223.jpg A second photo from Jennifer Richards

Banned May 7, 2010

"This picture is of me successfully breastfeeding my son after a four-week interruption due to medical issues. I successfully re-lactated and my baby never forgot how to nurse and latch! I am also bottle feeding my friend's son at the same time. Facebook, you suck!"

FB215.jpg Photo from Bonnie Wohl

Banned February 17 and April 4, 2010

FB216.jpg Photo from Nuyanne Gosselin

Banned March 8, 2010

This is an unusual one. Nuyanne Gosselin explains: "This photo depicts my firstborn daughter's moment of birth. That is actually my belly button front and centre in the photo and not a nipple (though even if it were my nipple, I would have a hard time viewing this photo as 'hateful, threatening, or obscene'). I had posted this photo as a beautiful example of an undisturbed foetal ejection reflex, something very few people ever see but something every mother deserves to experience."

Nuyanne runs Nativity Birth Services.

FB217.jpg Photo from Alexis Pate

Banned April 16 and May 15, 2010

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Photos from Kalynka Cherkosh, banned April 19, 2010

FB220.jpg Photo from Emma Kwasnica

Banned April 29, 2010. This is the second in a series of three breastfeeding photos.

"I am deeply saddened that anyone could find such an image "offensive" enough to delete. The context of this photo couldn't be any clearer. There is nothing "hateful, threatening, or obscene" about this photo, nor any other breastfeeding image. I really cannot fathom the extent of Facebook's misogyny, Facebook's fear of female power. If an innocent photo such as this is too much for Facebook's standards of decency, then what goes for all the other filth that proliferates all over their site ? Make no mistake --- breastfeeding images absolutely are being targeted and censored. This is unacceptable and must stop."

FB221.jpg Photo from

Millar

Banned in January 2010 and on May 4, 2010

"A La Leche League magazine editor saw this photo on Facebook and asked if she could use it for the cover of the new edition of their book. So this 'obscene' pic is now the cover of the eighth edition of The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding!"

Yes, you may check out that great book cover here. It's a closeup of the above photo.

FB222.jpg Photo from Wendy Jolliffe

Banned May 9, 2010 (Mother's Day in North America)

Wendy attached the following to the photo:

I am large in my skin
I make no apology
This belly grew four babies.
Why should it be flat?
It curves with the memory of the womb.
These breasts fed four babies
Why should they be pert?
They swell with the memory of milk.
These hips carried many children
Why should they be slim?
They are full with the memory of life.
My bones are secret under flesh
My skin plump and white and fine
Mine is the face of Botticelli
Mine is the water of the Nile
Mine is the shape of things forbidden
Daughter of Gaia, grown beautiful and wild.

--- original by Lorri Barrier, modified for this momma of four


FB224.jpg Photo from Melanie Flores

Banned June 14, 2010

Says Mel: "I guess polyester is not allowed."

FB225.jpg Photo from Renée Robichaud

Banned May 24, 2010

The Boob Radio. A bit like the one above, isn't it?

FB226.jpgPhoto from Marion Ségissement

Banned May 13 and 15, 2010

This is the third in a group of photos (the others are immediately preceding) that relate to breastfeeding rather than demonstrate it directly.

"This photo is about pregnancy and sisterhood. From the beginning, the objective was artistic: I was about to photograph the mother when the big sister came in and someone spoke to her of the baby to come. She touched and then hugged her future sister, who was moving about."

En français: « Il s'agit d'une photo de grossesse et de fraternité. L'objectif était au départ artistique : je devais photographier la maman, puis la grande soeur s'est approchée, on lui a parlé du bébé à venir, elle a touché puis embrassé sa future petite soeur qui bougeait. »

FB227.jpg Photo from Flory Gout

Banned June 12, 2010


FB228.jpg Photo from Jennifer Tite

Banned February 2010

FB229.jpg Photo from Jennifer Tite

Banned February 2010

FB230.jpg Photo from Jennifer Tite

Banned June 21, 2010

FB231.jpg Photo from Saga Riihinen

Banned June 23, 2010: this photo with some of the left side cropped out.

FB232.jpg Photo from Emma Kwasnica

Banned July 16, 2010: a photo of Emma with her six-day-old infant daughter. Emma Kwasnica is a distinguished lactivist and creator of Informed Choice: Birth and Beyond (ironically, on Facebook). She writes:

"I do wonder if it is precisely because my breasts are not being used to titillate men in this photo that it was found to be so offensive, offensive enough to be deleted. I mean, here is this nice-looking woman, hair done, wearing a somewhat dressy, funky, black top . . . looks like she could be heading out for a night on the town, right? And instead of seeing her breasts all smooshed up into a push-up bra and a large line of cleavage displayed for all the hot-blooded men to ogle, we see a baby suckling at her breast. Could utter rage be the response on the part of (some) men looking at this photo? On the part of the button-pushers behind their screens at Facebook, those who are deleting the photos, those who are responsible for insuring Facebook remains pure from all this sort of "filth"? As ludicrous as this might seem, could they be feeling denied by the space occupied by this tiny infant eating at my breast?

"I am devastated that our culture has done this to us, given us this mental disorder. But it has a name (Nipplephobia), and there is hope out there for people with it (therapy). Nipplephobia can be overcome; a large part of the therapy includes seeing more and more women breastfeeding their children, seeing more and more breasts everywhere, being bombarded by the image of breasts being used in their biological context --- that of nourishing a child. I highly recommend you try it. It's also why I post the dozens and dozens of breastfeeding photos that I do, on Facebook. Look at them. Over and over again. Please. It will do a world of good . . ."

FB233.jpg Photo from Danelle Frisbie and Alexis Hyde

Banned July 19, 2010 (Danielle) and January 11 and 12, 2011 (Alexis). Also banned February 1, 2011 from another account, and on many other days from many other accounts.

Look closely, and consider the words: "Made for each other. / Breast-feed." From Brazil, this is one of the more amazing photos that Facebook has deleted in its clueless, immature ignorance.

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